Green’s Dictionary of Slang

bluffer n.1

[? their ‘bluff’ manners, whether using bluff as hearty or as in setting out to deceive]

(UK Und.) an innkeeper; a hotel-keeper.

[UK]Head Canting Academy (2nd edn).
[UK]B.E. Dict. Canting Crew.
[UK]J. Shirley Triumph of Wit n.p.: bluffer, host.
[UK]A. Smith Lives of Most Notorious Highway-men, etc. (1926) 203: Bluffer, a host, inn-keeper, or victualler; to look bluff, to look big, or like bull-beef.
[UK]New Canting Dict. n.p.: bluffer c. a Host, Inn-keeper or Victualler.
[UK]Bailey Universal Etym. Eng. Dict.
[UK]B.M. Carew Life and Adventures.
[UK]Grose Classical Dict. of the Vulgar Tongue.
[UK]Lex. Balatronicum.
[UK]Egan Grose’s Classical Dict. of the Vulgar Tongue.
[UK]W.H. Smith ‘The Thieves’s Chaunt’ in Farmer Musa Pedestris (1896) 121: For she never lushes dog’s-soup or lap, / But she loves my cousin the bluffer’s tap.
[UK]Flash Dict. in Sinks of London Laid Open 99: Bluffer, an impudent imposing fellow of an inn-keeper.
[UK]Duncombe New and Improved Flash Dict.
[US]Matsell Vocabulum 13: bluffer The landlord of a hotel.
[US]Trumble Sl. Dict. (1890).
[US]S. Clapin New Dict. Americanisms.